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Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology About Us

Criminal Justice is comprised of a set of policies, recognized within the institutions of courts, corrections, and policing, that promotes and seeks to uphold control, order, and justice. Criminal Justice students are required to take courses in criminal justice, public policy, public administration, sociology, research methods, and statistics. The Criminal Justice and Criminology Program strives to produce graduates who understand crime and criminal justice policy, while learning to embody the highest academic, professional, and ethical standards in both their work and career fields.

Here at Washington State University, the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology blends both theory and practice, affording students with the opportunity to learn from leaders within the criminal justice field, whilst developing their own scholarship. While our undergraduate curriculum provides students a solid grounding in the field of criminal justice, our graduate curriculum builds on this and challenges students to develop a deeper understanding, fostering their skills as scholars.

Faculty Addressing Real-World Problems

Department faculty have a wide range of research and teaching interests, and the department is nationally and internationally recognized for scholarship with a focus on problem-driven research that confronts both traditional and emerging challenges in the U.S. and throughout the world. Faculty members routinely lend their expertise to a broad range of local, state, national and international government agencies and nongovernmental groups. This involvement on the ‘practitioner-side’ of policy serves to enrich both faculty research and teaching.

Hands-On Teaching and Learning

Our award-winning faculty place great emphasis upon providing exceptional undergraduate and graduate programming, with a unique emphasis on research collaboration at the graduate level. These hands-on teaching strategies reflect the problem-driven approach to research and instruction emphasized by our faculty and their ability to bring real-world perspective to students in the classroom.

When it comes to understanding the global aspects of criminal justice, a hands-on approach to teaching means studying abroad. Each year, the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology offers a short-term, spring break, faculty-led study abroad program with a specific focus on criminal justice. Destinations vary, and small groups of students have thus far visited criminal justice agencies in London, and in Amsterdam and The Hague. This unique experience takes place within a semester-long course fulfilling a wide range of possible requirements. For more information, inquire with Sisouvanh Keopanapay.

A Proud History

The department is the oldest in the United States. It was established in 1943 as the Department of Police Science by V.A. Leonard. Dr. Leonard founded Alpha Phi Sigma, the national criminal justice honor society, and was one of the founding members of the organization that later became the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences.

The department’s name was changed in 1975 to the Department of Criminal Justice. The criminal justice department merged with the Department of Political Science in 1982 (becoming the Criminal Justice Program), and was granted autonomous department status in 2011 as the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology.

Contact Us

Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology
Washington State University
Johnson Tower 701
P.O. Box 644872
Pullman, WA 99164-4872
Ph: 509-335-8611

Dr. Christine Horne

Graduate Director
Dr. Zachary Hamilton

Administrative Manager:
DeeDee Torgeson

Graduate Program Coordinator:
Rebeca Orozco

Undergraduate Academic Advisor:
Tina Krauss, Room, 725 (Students whose last name begins with letters: A — P)                                                     Ph: 509-335-5467

Sisouvanh (Sis) Keopanapay, Room, 726 (Students whose last name begins with letters: Q — Z; Students who have questions about Internship Credits)              Ph: 509-335-1204